Armenian Army NCOs training in US
07 Aug 16 | By Tim Mahon
In early August a group of 25 Armenian Army sergeants travelled to the US to participate in the third phase of a training programme as part of US efforts to help Armenia improve the quantity and readiness of its professional NCO corps. The two week course, offered by the Kansas National Guard, follows two earlier phases of training that took place in Armenia.
As part of defence reforms strongly supported by NATO, Armenia has been recruiting more ‘contract’ NCOs to bolster the strength of its forces as it commits to NATO-led peacekeeping operations. In a parallel development, US instructors started training Armenian sappers in counter-IED and EOD techniques near Yerevan in July: the sappers had previously dealt only with conventional landmines. Last year, US personnel trained a group of 12 instructors for the newly established Armenian paramedic school.
Some 130 Armenian military personnel are serving in Afghanistan, Kosovo and Lebanon, forming part of the special peacekeeping brigade established and supported with considerable technical and financial assistance from NATO. The brigade was recently recognised by NATO as having achieved a far greater degree of readiness and interoperability as a result of these initiatives.
Photo shows Armenian sergeants prior to boarding
a US aircraft at Yerevan International Airport on 4 Aug [Courtesy Armenian
Ministry of Defence]